7 women die of cervical cancer daily in Kenya – study


Cervical cancer vaccine
Cervical cancer vaccine

Seven women die of cervical cancer every day in Kenya, it has been revealed.

A presentation by the Cancer Institute acting Chief Executive Officer (CEO) has revealed a worrying figure; that more than half of the women who suffer from cervical cancer succumb to the disease.

Another worrying figure revealed is that 40 out of every 100,000 women suffer from the disease that is fast becoming a leading killer not only in the country but worldwide.

Speaking during the presentation Dr. Karagu , revealed that cervical cancer is the most common type of cancer among women.

“Cervical cancer represents 12 per cent of all new cases of cancer while breast cancer represents 11 per cent so if we can focus our efforts towards preventing these two forms of cancer we will have made huge steps towards managing the disease,” Dr. Karagu said.

The oncologist says that 4800-5000 new cases of cancer are reported both in men and women annually.

“Every passing day, we lose seven women to cervical cancer, actually it is the type of cancer that most Kenyans suffer from,” he said.

Dr. Karagu says that smoking and giving birth to three or more children increases the risk of developing cervical cancer in women.

He recommends that all women should begin cervical cancer screening when they turn 18 years saying that it helps in detecting the disease early enough thus making it easy to treat or cure.

“Early detection prevents 80 per cent of cervical cancer cases though the exercise is heavily recommended for women between 30-49 years of age,” says Dr. Karagu.

The doctor says that cervical cancer is spread when women are exposed to the Paulina virus which is spread through genital contact from one person to another.

His sentiments were echoed by Rose Chedo a cancer survivor who urged women to be screened regularly to avoid detecting the disease when it is too late.

“Before I was diagnosed with cancer, my doctor used to say that the discharge and spotting was normal but some checkups were done and that was when I knew I had cervical cancer. After four months, I was taken to the theatre and they realised the cancer was in stage 2b,” Ms. Chedo said.

 

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Story By Wahome Gitonga
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